You went into the second-round interview and aced it. Now what? Here's how to follow up so you don't ruin your chance of landing the job.
Everyone knows it's important to follow up after the first interview, but not all job candidates know they need to keep the lines of communication open after a second-round interview as well. Imagine your second interview went well — you asked all the right questions and you feel like you've already gotten your foot in the door.
But that could all go away if you don't follow up after the interview. According to TopResume's interview dealbreaker survey, "failing to follow up after the interview" was one of the least offensive interview deal-breakers (15th among the 17 poor behaviors). However, 51 percent of those surveyed confirmed that receiving a thank-you email or mailed note after an interview impacts their decision-making process. That means it could make or break your candidacy — even at this stage in the interview process.
So, don't become too confident and not follow up with the person or people who took the time to interview you. Instead, follow up by first thanking them again for their time and conclude with the reasons that demonstrate you're the right person for the job.
Send a meaningful thank-you email after your second interview
In today's highly digital age, it's considered normal and acceptable to send thank-you emails to those who interview you for a position. You should definitely send an email to each person you met with about the job within 24 hours, but sending an additional handwritten thank-you note can help make you stand out above the competition. Thoughtful, handwritten notes show that you took the time to send a message that can't be typed and sent out in just a few minutes, and that will show how enthusiastic you are about the job.
But what else should you include in this type of interview follow up?
Ask when a final decision will be made
Before you leave the second interview, don't be afraid to ask what the timeline is for making a decision, so you can know what to expect. Then, in your email, you can address the timeline and say you look forward to hearing back from them after they make their decision.
If you don't hear back by the time you were told a decision will be made, don't be reluctant to call or email asking about the hiring status. It will make you look proactive, and if it's a “no,” you can move on with your job search. Just remember not to call more than once or twice. It can appear annoying — if you don't hear back, just continue your search.
Research recent news about the organization
Since you are far along in the interview process, dropping knowledge about the company in your follow-up email is a must. Go to Google News and do a search on the company. You're likely to find something positive about the organization such as a recent award, record growth, or getting a new, big account. Include congratulations in your thank-you email. It will show that you're doing your homework and put effort into learning more about the company.
You can also do the same thing using a LinkedIn search. Look up the people who interviewed you and invite them to connect on LinkedIn because a simple glance at their profile will uncover any recent accomplishments or job anniversaries. You might even discover you have something in common, such as attending the same university or shared professional contacts. Feel free to include these common links in your follow-up note.
Second interview thank-you email example
Now that you know what you should include, how does it come together? If you need help crafting a good thank-you letter, use this example as a guide:
Thank you so much for taking the time to meet with me again about the Marketing Specialist position. I enjoyed meeting more members of the team and feel like it would be a good mutual fit. Every conversation I've had about the organization has made me more excited about the opportunity to join your team, and I'm confident I'll be a valuable contributor who helps move the company forward — especially now that you've acquired [talk about a business venture the company recently had or other recent accomplishment made].
Please don't hesitate to reach out with any other questions you have. I look forward to hearing back after you've made your decision.
Your thank-you email doesn't have to be elaborate or lengthy. However, it should demonstrate honesty, thoughtfulness, and enthusiasm.
Follow up after every interview
Whether it's your first interview or your fifth, always follow up with at least an email to say thank you, recap the meeting, express your enthusiasm for the job, and demonstrate confidence that you're a good fit. Even if you end up not being the right match for the position, the interviewers will remember how professional you were and might reach back out about a different position when the time is right. Set yourself up for success with good follow-up skills to land your dream job!
Getting the job interviews, but not the job offer? You might just need to brush up on your interviewing skills. Luckily, our sister site, TopInterview, has the coaches who can help.
Editor's Note: This article was originally published on our sister site, TopInterview.